Negotiations between the NPMHU and the Postal Service over the terms of their 2016 National Agreement have been revived, with the parties meeting in Washington, DC to resolve their remaining disputes.
One of the primary reasons for extending the NPMHU-USPS negotiations deadline past May 20, 2016 was to await issuance of a related interest-arbitration award, and that event has now occurred. On July 8, 2016, an arbitration panel chaired by Stephen Goldberg issued its award, setting the terms of the 2015 National Agreement between the Postal Service and the American Postal Workers Union.
That arbitration decision awarded a contract covering 40 months, from May 21, 2015 to September 20, 2018. On the key economic issues, the award provided career employees with three general wage increases of 1.2%, 1.3%, and 1.3%, as well as a potential for five cost-of-living adjustments during the same time period. Non-career employees who are not eligible for COLA were awarded wage increases of 2.2%, 2.3%, and 2.3%, plus another 50 cents per hour spread over the contract. The award also included no layoff protections for career employees currently on the rolls, and a continuation in the cost-sharing adjustments for the costs of career employee health insurance.
With this APWU-USPS award now being implemented, the NPMHU and the Postal Service are jointly aiming to complete their bargaining process. Only a handful of issues remain, and talks are underway to resolve those differences. It will probably be late summer or early fall before all matters are finalized, but if and when a tentative settlement agreement is reached, it will be subject to ratification by the entire membership of the NPMHU.
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You are reading the latest Contract Update produced and distributed by the NPMHU during the course of 2016 negotiations.
These updates, along with the Union’s magazine and monthly bulletins, will keep mail handlers throughout the country informed and involved in the issues raised during this round of bargaining. As expected, a lot happened during the final days of this year’s regular bargaining period. The Postal Service and NPMHU negotiated right up until the clock struck midnight on Friday, May 20.
Despite these efforts, however, an agreement on all of the outstanding terms and conditions of employment could not be reached before the deadline. Continue reading →
May 21, 2016 — The NPMHU and USPS bargaining teams have been engaged in contract negotiations since late February 2016 in an effort to reach agreement on the terms of their 2016 National Agreement.
Contract talks between the parties continued well into the night on Friday, May 20, 2016 as the 2011 National Agreement was set to expire at midnight. While significant progress has been achieved, the parties have nevertheless been unable to finalize a full and complete successor contract. The parties have therefore agreed to extend bargaining over several key issues, with the hope of eventually reaching a full agreement.
If and when a tentative successor agreement is reached, its terms will be distributed to the NPMHU membership for review and ratification. More details will be shared and discussed at a meeting of all Local Presidents scheduled for Tuesday, May 24.
WASHINGTON , DC,, May 21, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The United States Postal Service and the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) have agreed to extend contract negotiations on a new collective bargaining agreement.
Although the contract with the NALC expired at midnight Friday, May 20, the Postal Service and the NALC have mutually decided to extend negotiations beyond the deadline.
The NALC represents approximately 210,000 city letter carriers nationwide.
The Postal Service and the National Postal Mail Handlers Union, AFL-CIO (NPMHU) also have agreed to extend contract negotiations on a new collective bargaining agreement.
Although the contract with the Mail Handlers union also expired at midnight Friday, May 20, the Postal Service and the NPMHU have mutually decided to extend negotiations beyond the deadline.
The NPMHU represents approximately 44,000 employees nationwide.
You are reading the third Contract Update produced and distributed by the NPMHU during the course of 2016 negotiations. These updates, along with the Union’s magazine and monthly bulletins, will keep mail handlers throughout the country informed and involved in the issues raised during this round of bargaining.
The NPMHU and the Postal Service have now been engaged in collective bargaining for approximately one month. Here is a summary of what has happened during that time, and an update as how negotiations are proceeding.
The Mail Handlers Union has announced that the USPS has dropped plans to outsource the handling of non-machinable parcels (NMOs). The USPS had contracted with United Parcel Service to perform originating and destinating sortation of NMOs from the Des Moines and Chicago Network Distribution Centers in 2013. The USPS referred to the contract as a “pilot test”, but the union contended that the “test” violated the National Agreement, and filed a grievance. That grievance has now been withdrawn:
In a memorandum to all Local Presidents, NPMHU President Paul Hogrogian and CAD Manager T.J. Branch disseminated information relative to the NPMHU’s National-level grievance over the possible subcontracting of sorting and processing Non-Machinable Outside (NMO) parcels.
As set forth in the attached agreement, the NMP pilot test has ended; the NMO parcel operation is back to its normal operating procedures; and the Postal Service has ceased further evaluation of outsourcing for NMO parcels.
12/04/2015 – Arbitrator Shyam Das ruled on Dec. 3, 2015, that the American Postal Workers Union and the National Postal Mail Handlers Union may now go forward with their Step 4 grievances challenging the Postal Service’s decision to close or consolidate approximately 82 mail processing facilities starting January of 2015. The grievances had contended that the consolidations violated the PO-408 Handbook, Closures and Consolidations Area Mail Processing (AMP) Guidelines.
The USPS challenged the grievances stating the PO-408 was not a handbook covered by Article 19. The arbitrator agreed that the PO-408 has a direct relationship with “wages, hours or working conditions” and the hearing on the merits can go forward.
The hearing took place on April 6, 2015, brought forth by the NPMHU with the APWU as an intervenor.
APWU President Mark Dimondstein pointed to “the great work and preparation that the National Mail Handlers Union put forth as well as the essential efforts by the APWU team led by case officer Executive Vice President Debby Szeredy.”
Szeredy noted, “This is an enormous win, and we are now eager to get the merits heard before any further consolidations occur.”
The National Office is pleased to report that the parties have come to an agreement on the procedures for filling residual vacancies. On August 17, 2015, the USPS and NPMHU entered into a Memorandum of Understanding providing for a specific pecking order when filling residual vacancies.
The MOU only applies to those installations that are not subject to withholding pursuant to Article 12. In those installations, the MOU provides a specific pecking order for filling residual vacancies that most prominently includes the right to return to the installation for those with active retreat rights, the conversion of PTF and PTR Mail Handlers, transfers through e-Reassign, and the conversion of MHAs to career status. Overall, this MOU should provide greater opportunities for our MHAs to achieve career status.
In a separate but related matter, the parties have agreed that the MOU Re Filling of Residual Vacancies does not change current rules or practices on the demotion of EAS/management employees or the reinstatement of employees into the mail handler craft. For clarity on this point, the parties have reached agreement by way of a separate MOU Re Demotion of EAS/Management Employees or Reinstatement of Former Employees into Mail Handler Craft, through which the parties agree to refer unresolved matters of demotion or reinstatement to the Article 12 Task Force.
Late Thursday, August 13, 2015, the NPMHU National Office filed a federal lawsuit against the U.S. Postal Service, claiming that the USPS breached its binding contractual obligations when it unilaterally announced a reversal of its earlier determination that the primary craft for operating the Small Parcel Sorting System is the Mail Handler craft. The NPMHU is seeking a declaration that the Postal Service has breached the tripartite agreement on jurisdictional craft assignments, as well as injunctive and monetary relief to remedy this breach. The APWU also has been named in the suit, as a required party to any litigation on this subject. The suit is now pending in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Legal actions raising related, but distinct challenges also have been initiated under the RI-399 Dispute Resolution Procedures and through unfair labor practice charges at the National Labor Relations Board.
The NPMHU National Office has filed an appeal to arbitration concerning the disputed work on the Small Parcel Sorting System (SPSS), as well as an unfair labor practice charge with the National Labor Relations Board. The latter seeks injunctive relief under Section 10(j) of the National Labor Relations Act.